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The impact of simulation-based training on medical students' whole blood transfusion abilities.

Transfusion 2024 May 24
BACKGROUND: Whole blood transfusion has been found to increase the likelihood of patient survival within both military and civilian medicine contexts. However, no whole blood transfusion training curriculum currently exists within undergraduate or graduate medical education in the United States. The purpose of our study was to: (1) determine the impact of simulation-based training on medical students' abilities to conduct whole blood transfusions; and (2) determine the impact of simulation-based training on medical students' confidence in conducting whole blood transfusions.

STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: We assessed 157 third-year military medical students' ability to conduct whole blood transfusion before and after Operation Gunpowder, a 2-day high-fidelity prolonged casualty care simulation. We conducted a paired samples t-test to compare the students' pre- and post-simulation performance scores as well as self-reported confidence and stress ratings.

RESULTS: There was a significant difference in students' scores at the beginning of the course (M = 20.469, SD 6.40675) compared to their scores at the end of the course (M = 30.361, SD = 2.10053); t(155) = -18.833, p < .001. The effect size for this analysis (d = 6.56) was large. There was a significant difference (p < .001) between the pre- and post-ratings for all self-reported confidence and stress survey items.

DISCUSSION: Our results suggest that simulation-based training is an effective means of training medical students to conduct whole blood transfusiontraining in a limited resource simulated environment where blood inventories may be limited.

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